Letter: Complex farm issues
My father-in-law is a farmer in southwest Minnesota who raises a small herd of natural beef cattle breed called Aubric and he was at one time a small dairy farmer. He also taught artificial insemination (AI) classes for many years as area dairy producers. Mary Boland’s recent column noted that the organic farms are paid by the farms to be certified. That is correct, as under law the farmer pays the U.S. Department of Agriculture an annual fee to be inspected and to be certified. So we and the farmer pay our government to certify these farms.
On my second point, you make it sound that AI is designed to make the animals fat and cannot stand or move. Now when they are using AI, they are making the cows pregnant, so they are going to get fat because they are pregnant.
As we use AI or in vitro fertilization humans, they, too, get fat, and why? They are pregnant. We need to understand what AI is being used for. A bull for example can breed multiple cows during the breeding season without AI, as nature can dictate. So if we were to use your example by implying that we need more bulls for dairy cows, then this gives us a conundrum with your theory, as this would lead us to more beef needing to be sold as time goes on instead of less, as you are promoting eating less beef than we are currently consuming.
Your opinion was informative but I would suggest that all our readers and students do the research and learn what a farm has to go through to be certified and how it operates to bring food to our table. There is not simple answer, but we can educate ourselves and work with our legislators and other countries so we can increase the quality of all our food sources that we consume.
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